Endless Yearning II
- Poetry of Li Bai (Li Po)

《长相思·其二》

- Last updated: 2024-04-23 22:14:59

Endless Yearning II by Li Bai (Li Po)
中文原文

日色欲尽花含烟,月明如素愁不眠。

赵瑟初停凤凰柱,蜀琴欲奏鸳鸯弦。

此曲有意无人传,愿随春风寄燕然。

忆君迢迢隔青天,昔日横波目,今作流泪泉。

不信妾断肠,归来看取明镜前。


English Translation

"The sun has set, and a mist is in the flowers;

And the moon grows very white and people sad and sleepless.

A Zhao harp has just been laid mute on its phoenix holder,

And a Shu lute begins to sound its mandarin-duck strings....

Since nobody can bear to you the burden of my song,

Would that it might follow the spring wind to Yanran Mountain.

I think of you far away, beyond the blue sky,

And my eyes that once were sparkling

Are now a well of tears.

...Oh, if ever you should doubt this aching of my heart,

Here in my bright mirror come back and look at me!"

Folk-song-styled-verse

Why Chinese poems is so special?
The most distinctive features of Chinese poetry are: concision- many poems are only four lines, and few are much longer than eight; ambiguity- number, tense and parts of speech are often undetermined, creating particularly rich interpretative possibilities; and structure- most poems follow quite strict formal patterns which have beauty in themselves as well as highlighting meaningful contrasts.
How to read a Chinese poem?
Like an English poem, but more so. Everything is there for a reason, so try to find that reason. Think about all the possible connotations, and be aware of the different possibilities of number and tense. Look for contrasts: within lines, between the lines of each couplet and between successive couplets. Above all, don't worry about what the poet meant- find your meaning.

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